Archive for December, 2009

My Valhalla

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Forget The Museum of Natural History,
The Metropolitan or The Smithsonian.
The collection I want to wander in
I call the Valhalla of Lost Things.

The Venus de Milo’s arms are here,
she’s grown quite attached to them.
I circle Leonardo’s sixteen-foot-tall
equestrian statue, never cast, browse

all five-hundred-thousand volumes
of The Alexandrian Library, handle
artifacts of Atlantis. Here are all
the ballades and rondeaux of Villon,

the finished score of The Unfinished
Symphony, I read all of Edwin Drood
and Answered Prayers. I’ll screen ten
missing reels of Von Stroheim’s Greed,

hear the famous gap in Nixon’s tapes.
There are lost things here so lost,
no one knows they were lost—manuscripts
by the unknown Kafka, far greater

than Kafka’s; his best friend obeyed,
shredded every sheet. The cure for cancer
is here: The inventor didn’t recognize,
the potion went unpatented . . .

In my museum no guard shushes me
for talking, there are no closing times,
it’s always free. Here I can see
what no one living has seen, I satisy

that within me which is not whole.
Here I am curator not of what is,
but of what should have been,
and what should be.

~Robert Phillips~
what have you lost?
Poems selected by Naomi Shihab Nye

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We’ve all had things happen that left us pondering: wow, that was strange or what a coincidence.  Brief events that leave you doing a little double take because of their timing or strangely coincidental nature.  They often leave me asking — wow, what were the odds of that happening?

This week I had four fluke-ish events happen back to back and they all came within a 12 hour period.  Normally I would have mused over how interesting that was and then forgotten about it.  This time they so grabbed my attention that I delved deeper into what is the true nature of this phenomena.

What if the Field (Universe, God, Source) is in conversation with me via these chance happenings?  What if these are love notes from the Field or postcards from the Field?  In my mind’s eye, I took the events and put an image that captured its essence on the front of a postcard.  If the Field is in conversation with me right now through these events, what is the Field trying to tell me?  I flip the postcard over knowing it contains a note from the Field personalized just for me.   Here is what it reads:

You are known.
You are seen.
You are loved.
You are not alone.

I love the beauty in that.  Next time you experience something that left you feeling like it was a surprising coincidence, something so unusual it really got your attention, stop for that moment and take it in. The Field is talking to you, it’s in conversation with you by way of this or these events and it has a message for you.  Just for you.  You’ve just received a postcard, a love note from the Field.  Be ready, open and receptive to hearing what the Field has to tell you.  It’s timing is never predictable.  It will catch you by surprise and wonderfully so!

And a gorgeous postscript to this — I wrote this post and entitled it — Postcards from the Field.  I then did a google search for an accompanying image, typing in the search box “image of postcards”.   The above image came up immediately.  The Field has a sense of humour!  And the message on the back of this postcard:

We are always in conversation with you.
Love always, The Universe

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there are oceans of blue sky within

one deep inhale of the ancient salt water sky

and you are capsized into this world

gently you are breathed through the ebb and the swell

you  —  have lived here forever

while this world has unfailingly carried you


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The snow
began here
this morning and all day
continued, its white
rhetoric everywhere
calling us back to why, how,
whence such beauty and what
the meaning; such
an oracular fever! flowing
past windows, an energy it seemed
would never ebb, never settle
less than lovely! and only now,
deep into night,
it has finally ended.
The silence
is immense,
and the heavens still hold
a million candles, nowhere
the familiar things:
stars, the moon,
the darkness we expect
and nightly turn from. Trees
glitter like castles
of ribbons, the broad fields
smolder with light, a passing
creekbed lies
heaped with shining hills;
and though the questions
that have assailed us all day
remain — not a single
answer has been found —
walking out now
into the silence and the light
under the trees,
and through the fields,
feels like one.

~Mary Oliver~
excerpted from American Primitive

Those who are familiar with Mary Oliver’s poetry know that she has a deep and abiding love of nature.  It’s one that I share, hence I am often drawn to her poetry.  At the conclusion of the poem, the statement: “feels like one”, I believe she is saying it feels like an answering.  Said another way, amidst the quiet majestic beauty and stillness of nature there are no unanswered questions.  Immersed in the wonder around you suddenly there are no questions left.  It is a union with nature that is so brimming with the wholeness that you and everything else is.  What’s left but to happily lose yourself inside that world, devoid of questions now, awash in a knowing and an ineluctable sense of how incredible it is to bear witness to this amazing world and yourself in it.

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Just Do It

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Who can find a trace of you?
There isn’t even a bit of dust from your track.
Who could find your home?
You have no home.

How can I praise you?
What can I say about you?
Foam is the only form in the sea of meaning.

A great, unseen town
lies just behind that curtain
Our world is nothing compared to that.

Don’t lower yourself.
Don’t knock on every door.
You yourself are what you’re looking for.

O heart, raise your tent up to the sky.
Don’t say, “I can’t.”
Sure you can. Just do it.

~The Forbidden Rumi~
The Suppressed Poems of Rumi on Love, Heresy, and Intoxication
Translations and Commentary by Nevit O. Ergin & Will Johnson

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Starting here, what do you want to remember?
How sunlight creeps along a shining floor?
What scent of old wood hovers, what softened
sound from outside fills the air?

Will you ever bring a better gift for the world
than the breathing respect that you carry
wherever you go right now? Are you waiting
for time to show you some better thoughts?

When you turn around, starting here, lift this
new glimpse that you found; carry into evening
all that you want for this day. This interval you spent
reading or hearing this, keep it for life —

What can anyone give you greater than now,
starting here, right in this room when you turn around?

~William Stafford~
The Way It Is

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